Becky Tang, Middlebury College
Understanding community responses to climate is critical for anticipating the future impacts of global change. However, despite increased research efforts in this field, models that explicitly include important biological mechanisms are lacking. Quantifying these impacts is complicated by the fact that the effects of climate variation may manifest at several points in the biological process. I will describe a dynamic mechanistic model that combines population dynamics, such as species interactions, with species redistribution by allowing climate to affect both processes. We examine relative contributions in an application to the changing biomass of a community of eight species in the Gulf of Maine using over 30 years of fisheries data from the Northeast Fishery Science Center. Our model suggests that the mechanisms driving biomass trends vary across space, time, and species.